Serving areas of Bellevue, Newcastle, and Medina WA
It is no surprise to any of us that sugar and tooth decay go together like peanut butter and jelly. This time of year, we tend to see lots of sweets that remind us of the holiday season. Bellevue dentists at Spektor Dental understand that you may not want to pass up these sweet treats all the time, but you should be mindful of their effect on your teeth. Follow these tips this holiday season so that you can enjoy some sweet treats without wrecking your oral health.
Drink lots of water
When it comes to staying healthy, balance is key. Whether you are sitting down to raid your kid’s stash from Halloween candy, or are tempted by pumpkin spice treats in the break room, balance it out by drinking plenty of water. Water helps rinse away residual sugar that may be left in your mouth and on your teeth. While it should not be a replacement for brushing and flossing, it certainly helps, especially if you’re unable to brush during the day.
Set a limit
Most people think that as long as they don’t pig out on candy or sweets, that they are in the clear. When it comes to your oral health, it’s not necessarily the amount of sugar that you eat, but how often you eat it. If you are grazing on sweets throughout the day, you constantly are bathing your teeth in sugar. This consistent behavior can do more damage than enjoying a serving or two of sweets all in one sitting. So, if you want to eat sweets, just do it and be done with it.
Up your oral hygiene routine
It is recommended that you brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily, but during times where you consume more sugar, it is a good idea to up your brushing and flossing game. If you are able, brush your teeth after eating sweet snacks. If you aren’t able to do so, chew some sugar-free gum containing Xylitol, which helps reduce your risk of cavities. Xylitol stimulates the flow of saliva, which is a natural protectant against bacteria.
Make wise choices
Sticky or gooey sweets are the worst for your teeth. They stick to your enamel and have been known to dislodge crowns and fillings. It’s best to steer clear of these sweets, or at the very least, just let them melt in your mouth. Also, be wary of hard, crunchy candies or things like peanut brittle. They can break teeth and dental restorations. The same rule of thumb applies to these types of sweets as well. Just let them melt in your mouth or until soft enough to chew without compromising your teeth and dental health.
Visit your Bellevue dentists for a checkup
Aside from the recommended twice-yearly dental checkups and cleanings, you may want to schedule an additional checkup through the holidays just to keep an eye out for any changes to your oral health. Protect your oral health by visiting the dentist right after the New Year to keep your oral health in check. These visits allow us to document any changes in your oral health history, as well as identify problems before they become bigger, more expensive issues to fix.
This holiday season, you can enjoy those nostalgic sweet treats, but don’t slack on your oral hygiene. Make smart choices by following our guide to protecting your oral health. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, call Spektor Dental at (425) 454-1322. We are conveniently located in Bellevue, near Newcastle and Medina.